When you think of Peru, you likely imagine the Incan ruins of Machu Picchu or the llama-like vicuña – the country’s national animal. But, did you know that Peru is the second largest supplier of mangos to the United States?
In fact, Peru has over 59,000 acres of mango plantations along its coast, and exports more than 70,000 tons of mangos each year across the world. That’s the weight of nearly 1.4 million vicuña!
With Peruvian Kent mangos available in January and February and five other varieties available throughout the year, mangos are always in season in the United States. The green-skinned Kent mango originated from Florida in the 1940s, but now is mostly harvested in Mexico, Ecuador, and Peru. Their sweet and rich flavor with limited fibers make them perfect for juicing and drying.
When choosing a ripe Kent mango, look for yellow undertones, dots starting to cover the fruit, and a slight give when you squeeze it. Once you purchase your fresh Kent, try putting a mango spin on Peru’s national dish – the ceviche.
As you enjoy your Peruvian mango, think of the long journey it took from the plantation in South America, all the way to your home.